|The Struggle to Save Adullam|
Local and National Destruction
The National Importance of the Adullam Park and Surrounding Areas
The Adullam area, located within the lowlands of the Judean Hills, includes the Adullam Caves and Britannia National Park. This unique area, the heartland of the ancient and modern Jewish states, incorporates vistas of Mediterranean groves and green hills, a variety of native animal species, and a wide variety of national heritage sites, including Bar Kochba’s secret cave network, and settlements from the Second Temple Period.
The Jewish National Fund donated the park to the citizens of Israel in honor of the nation’s 60th year of independence, and is currently being submitted for consideration as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The National Planning Administration has already invested large sums to protect the site’s many natural assets and advance its status as a unique biosphere.
The drilling license granted to the foreign-owned IEI company for the testing and production of fuel from oil shale includes within its range the Adullam Park (marked in blue). Allocating this land as an industrial fuel production site would cause damage to the natural resources, open landscapes, and historical heritage sites in the area.
Immediate Repercussions of Industrial Oil Production
According to initial estimates, immediate environmental repercussions of industrial production of 300,000 barrels of oil would include:
-Building a power plant to meet the energy needs of underground heating, with an estimated output of twice the current production levels of the Hadera electricity plant.
- Annual greenhouse gas emissions reaching an estimated 20-40% of the current total national level.
-Approximately 300 underground lateral boreholes per year, each 5 kilometers (3.1 miles) long, producing about 300 cubic meters (980 cubic feet) of waste material per day (the equivalent of 20 truckloads daily) for the duration of the project.
(A detailed description of the Save Adullam organization’s considerations and resulting calculations was submitted to the Israeli Environmental Protection Agency).
Anticipated Regional Damage
The proposed experimental fuel production site, and the industrial site to follow, are predicted to cause severe environmental damage to our ancestral homeland. Much of the damage will beirreversible. We have presented the fuel company with a list of our concerns and questions, and we have yet to receive satisfactory answers.